News & Resources: Fears about young people’s sexuality hinder HPV vaccination efforts

1) HPV Vaccinations Don’t Encourage Risky Sex – (October 2018) – A common assumption is that young girls will feel encouraged to engage in risky sexual behavior by receiving the vaccination for human papilloma virus (HPV). Studies have proven otherwise time and time again, instead concluding that sexual health education is crucial for adolescent health.

2) What is the HPV vaccine? – (August 2018) – Why is the HPV vaccine important? The Centers for Disease Control presents relevant facts and statistics on HPV infection.

3) HPV Vaccine: State Legislation and Statutes – NCSL (June 2018) – The National Conference for State Legislation discusses the lower-than-optimal rates at which young people are receiving the HPV vaccine, which can protect against certain forms of cancer among both men and women, and presents an overview of state legislation aimed at increasing vaccination rates.

4) Ten Years of HPV Vaccination – Academic Pediatrics (March 2018) – A study in the journal of the Academic Pediatric Association documents low rates of HPV vaccination in the US despite requirements in some states of proof of vaccination for school attendance and the recommendation by medical professionals for male and female adolescents to be vaccinated between ages 11 and 12.

5) Political Ideology and Trust – PloS One (January 2018) – This study finds a relation between ideology and beliefs, on the one hand, and willingness to vaccinate, on the other. In particular, authors correlate conservative views with anti-vaccination sentiments.

6) Florida Bill Would Require HPV Vaccination for Public Schools – An example of legislation in a state not known for progressive policies on sexuality.

7) Politics, Parents, and Prophylaxis: Mandating HPV – New England Journal of Medicine (May 2007) – Although this paper was written over a decade ago, its crux remains true today: that parents and politics are key factors for why HPV vaccination rates among adolescents are lower than public health experts recommend.

8) HPV Vaccination Among Lesbian and Bisexual Women – National Institutes of Health (July 2014) – There’s plenty of HPV infection research, but little about lesbian and bisexual women, specifically. This study finds low vaccination rates among these groups.

9) Action Guide for Cancer Prevention Through HPV Vaccination – National HPV Vaccination Roundtable  – These guides aim to foster higher rates of vaccinations among adolescents and offer policy and implementation ideas for large healthcare systems or facilities.

10) Accessibility of HPV Vaccine Among Gay and Bisexual Men – (March 2010) – This study discusses the willingness of gay and bisexual men to receive the HPV vaccine, which could help reduce the higher rates of anal cancer within this demographic.